Candidates Take a Silver Platter Ride into Federal Parliament
By: Eva Chaaya
With the Australian Federal Election less than 3 months away, voters have little time left to determine who the candidates in their seat are. That is, determining more than just their name and political party, but having real knowledge of policies, plans, and objectives, and even the way they operate and their values and beliefs.
At the same time, do the candidates really know what their electorate needs, and how they can best serve their electorate. Neither the voters nor the candidates can be in these respective positions, unless there is real interaction between the two. Real interaction means the two have to meet each other, they have to talk to each other, they have to have access to each other, and they have to discuss issues with each other. Ask almost all voters what interaction they have had with candidates, and the answer will be none or little. Sure they have received or will receive something in the mail, they will see posters with the candidate’s picture and political party, and they might pick up a brochure or see something in their local paper. Mostly, this will occur very close to the actual election day, and nothing will be seen or heard of prior to this. Voters don’t see and will never see most MPs and Ministers. All of this is especially relevant to current MPs in Canberra, many of whom are Government Ministers. Voters have been extremely critical, and consider this a big failure.
Where is the real hard work of the candidate getting out and about in their electorate, where are the formal meetings and events for interaction to occur, where are the door knocks at houses, street after street. Instead candidates take the easy option of a piece of paper in the mail, in other words the silver platter into parliament. Surely they should earn their position through more effort, sweat, and sheer hard work, meeting and discussing issues and concerns with as many voters as possible. Surely this would be real service of the community, surely the vote would then more accurately represent what the voters really want. The voter would really know what and for whom they are voting.
This situation is common to all Political Parties, and does not apply to just one or two. It is time for all candidates to really show who and what they are. Meet your voters, face to face, and not just on a piece of paper. How can voters make a proper informed decision in the interests of the whole community and the nation if they do not have the information? Come on candidates, no more silver platters into parliament.